If we look at the methodical approach of the Mets’ front office the past few winters, and every legitimate Mets fan has, there is no conceivable scenario that Nelson Cruz ends up a New York Met for four years and $75 million dollars. And we should be glad that’s the case.
In fact, I don’t want any part of Cruz for less.
Not simply because of PEDs, not simply because of his age, and not simply because of the money he’s demanding, but because he just isn’t a very good player.
If we’re being honest with ourselves and not wearing desperation colored glasses (who could blame us, though?) we’ll notice that, besides Cruz’s defensive shortcomings and his inability to stay on the field (missed 148 games due to suspension and injury the past four seasons), Nelson Cruz’s home and away splits are just disastrous.
Everyone knows Arlington is a launching pad, especially in comparison to Citi Field. Over the past four years here are Cruz’s splits averaged out:
These stats are too stark to ignore and there’s no reason to suspect his road stats would be any different at Citi—if not worsened.
I didn’t even average in his splits from five years ago, but they illustrate my point even further. I’ve left them out because I wanted to highlight 2009, which was Cruz’s most prolific power year when he hit: 33 home runs.
As a team desperately in need of a “power bat,” the Mets would covet 33 homerun output. But when I looked at the splits again, I was alarmed not encouraged.
While the power didn’t drop off much on the road, the average dipped precipitously. It’s also worth mentioning that his OBP at home was .362, while it was only .300 on the road.
If this was Cruz’s peak not only was it five years ago, but the stats consistently highlight warts in his hitting game that would only be magnified if, essentially, he plays all of his games on the road. At least that’s what his life would be like as a Metropolitan.
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This Fan Shot was contributed by MMO reader, Matt Naham. Have something you want to say about the Mets? Share your opinions with over 22,000 Mets fans who read this site daily. Send your Fan Shot to GetMetsmerized@aol.com. Or ask us about becoming a regular contributor.